Office of Science and Technology Policy has named two scientists from the Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory as 2009 Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) winners. According to Argonne National Labs, the PECASE awards are "the nation’s highest honor for researchers in the beginning stages of their independent research careers." The two are materials scientist Dillon Fong and nanoscientist Elena Shevchenko, who "were selected by the for their contributions to meeting America’s scientific and technological missions and the country’s economic, energy, health and security needs."
Shevchenko heads "the NanoBio Interfaces Group in Argonne’s Center for Nanoscale Materials." Nanoparticles (also called nanoscale materials or simply nanomaterials) "are small assemblies of particular materials that have special properties." According to Argonne National Labs, "Shevchenko’s work specifically examined how nanoparticles self-organize to form more complicated materials."
Fong "works in Argonne’s Materials Science Division, where he investigates the formation and structure of complex oxide thin films." In his research, he asks "questions like how these thin film crystals grow, and how much of this growth can we control?" And "do these materials behave when they are only a few nanometers thick?"
Read more about their achievements at the links and in the Argonne press release. Both scientists will receive their awards later this year at the White House.